INTRODUCTION The 1980s was a good decade for advocates of human resource management (HRM) in the UK. To managers it seemed to offer an attractive alternative to the jaded image of personnel management and the dated rhetoric of traditional industrial relations. Many academics welcomed it with equal enthusiasm, establishing new university chairs and courses in H R M and writing textbooks on the subject. Indeed, among academics, it offered new hope for those who had begun to despair of the long-term potential of industrial relations and personnel management as important academic subjects. The growth of H R M in the UK clearly owes something to the political, economic and business climate of the 1980s and the tendency during the decade to look to the United States as a model of good practice in all these fields. American multinationals have been to the forefront of HRM innovation in the UK (Purcell et a l . , 1987) and the leading advocates are all American. As we enter the 199Os, there are signs that in the UK the American model is losing its appeal as attention focuses to a greater extent on developments in Europe. This is therefore a good
Journal of Management Studies – Wiley
Published: Jul 1, 1990
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